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July 15, 2010

Tiger Woods


TIGER WOODS: Today felt awkward because there was absolutely no wind whatsoever, and you never play a links golf course with no wind. So most of the guys were 4- or 5-under par through the loop and just had to go get it.

Q. How do you rate your new putter?
TIGER WOODS: I'm very pleased with it. As I said, it comes off faster, and these greens are just the slowest I've seen in a long time, if ever, and especially with the moisture they have out there. Some of the putts that are uphill into the grain are pretty slow, and just imagine if you get the wind blowing, as well.
It came off well, and I putted pretty good today.

Q. How important was it to get off to a good start?
TIGER WOODS: You know, with the conditions we had, you had to go get it. You had to take advantage of it. I felt like I did a pretty good job of that today, and I let the round mature. Most of the guys were under early, even though I wasn't, and I said, just let the round mature, just keep hanging in there and keep plugging along, and it could have been a pretty good round today.

Q. Were you aware of what Rory was shooting? I assume everybody out there was.
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, we all saw was Rory was doing, what J.D. was doing because he was doing it in front of Rory. It just goes to show you that the golf course could have been had. You know, at the time I think when I was playing either 17 or 18, to be in the Top 10 you had to be 5-under. You don't see that at too many majors.

Q. Do you reckon you can chase Rory down?
TIGER WOODS: We've got three more rounds.

Q. Steve Williams was quite outspoken about your putting a couple days ago. Would you prefer if he kept those observations between you and him?
TIGER WOODS: I haven't heard about anything.

Q. (Inaudible.)
TIGER WOODS: I wasn't putting poorly two days ago.

Q. That's when the story came out.
TIGER WOODS: Probably when the story came out, yeah.

Q. Was this a better round considering the fact that the way you started it out, your body language was sort of like you weren't too thrilled what was going on the first through holes, and then --
TIGER WOODS: No, as I said, the art here is just letting the round mature, and there's no need to force it. Just go ahead and just capitalize on certain holes, and just because I'm at 1-under par doesn't mean I need to go force things.
As I said, let the round mature. I had plenty of holes left, but the conditions were benign and just go ahead and get it done, and it happened.

Q. Do you feel like you're searching less here now as you're coming along this year than you were certainly at Augusta?
TIGER WOODS: It's getting better every week. Every week I'm playing, the things I've been working on have been starting to come together. I'm hitting shots that I haven't hit in a long time. It's building.

Q. You had a round like this at Pebble on Saturday, but you couldn't back it up the next day. How do you find that again? Obviously you've done it in the past.
TIGER WOODS: Yeah, depends on conditions, what's going on out there, just plug along and see what happens.

Q. A lot was made about the reaction there might be from the fans today. You must be pretty happy with how they received?
TIGER WOODS: They've always been respectful and enthusiastic here. There's no reason it would be any different. They were great out there today. They were just enthusiastic -- we were making a bunch of birdies, so a lot to cheer about. But they were very respectful.

Q. Pretty solid start. Do you feel there could be a third St. Andrews Open for you?
TIGER WOODS: We've got a long way to go, a long way to go. Just keep plugging along.

Q. How impressive is 63 even on a day like today?
TIGER WOODS: It's a pretty impressive round, no doubt. Rory kept it going, he played well through the loop, but he also finished it off well, too, made a couple birdies late. Even when the wind started picking up.

Q. Thoughts on the course, please?
TIGER WOODS: The course, it's starting to slow down a little bit. The greens are definitely slow. The fairways, depends on certain holes, but they're just -- some holes are giving it up, some holes aren't. We're surprised that our tee shots on 18 didn't get up there. We all hit some pretty good tee shots there, and somehow they just didn't chase, but on holes like 14 they chased pretty hard. Depends on the holes.

Q. When you walk away from this day, what's the most important thing to take out of this round?
TIGER WOODS: Well, I'm in good shape. I took advantage of a golf course when I needed to take advantage of it. You know, as of right now, we're on the good side of the draw, but you don't know tomorrow. I mean, the weather is supposed to come in here at 11:00, but there's no weather, so we'll see.

Q. Would you have any advice for Rory after today?
TIGER WOODS: Well, just keep doing what he's doing. Obviously he's doing what he needs to do, and he's got a long way to go. He knows how to win golf tournaments, and he'll be fine.

Q. The putt on 18 that was short, you just didn't hit it hard enough?
TIGER WOODS: Well, it's a putt you've got to play about 15, 18 feet of break. It's a hard putt to judge (laughing).

Q. 17, how long was that?
TIGER WOODS: Probably about four and a half feet, and I got the club underneath me and shut going back, just like I did 18 on my second putt, and it went left.

Q. What happened with the tee shot on 17?
TIGER WOODS: I was trying to hit a cut and just didn't trust it. I hit more of a pull and ended up where I ended up.

End of FastScripts

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